SUBSCRIBE | NEWSLETTERS | MAPS | VIDEOS | BLOGS | MARKETPLACE | CONTESTS
TRY BACKPACKER FREE!
SUBSCRIBE NOW and get
2 Free Issues and 3 Free Gifts!
Full Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
City:
State:
Zip Code:
Email: (required)
If I like it and decide to continue, I'll pay just $12.00, and receive a full one-year subscription (9 issues in all), a 73% savings off the newsstand price! If for any reason I decide not to continue, I'll write "cancel" on the invoice and owe nothing.
Your subscription includes 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Or click here to pay now and get 2 extra issues
Offer valid in US only.

Also on Backpacker.com


Enter Zip Code

Backpacker Magazine – Fall Gear Guide 2009

Gear Lab

We took durability testing to the extremes, so you would know which gear lasts–and why.

by: Ted Alvarez // Photos by Julia Vandenoever // Illustrations by R. Michael Stinson

Packs were dragged behind this SUV.
Packs were dragged behind this SUV.
Boots were thrashed in a cement mixer filled with rocks and sticks.
Boots were thrashed in a cement mixer filled with rocks and sticks.
Tents got the hose again.
Tents got the hose again.
Sleeping bags spent a night under the wheels of a 2-ton car.
Sleeping bags spent a night under the wheels of a 2-ton car.


PACKS
 
If a backpack can survive road rash at 60 miles per hour, it can handle any backcountry abuse.
video icon Plus: Watch the test in our video.


TENTS
 
Who wants a mountain tent that buckles under pressure? Not us–so we subjected four to a powerful series of tests.
video icon Plus: Watch the test in our video.

BOOTS
 
To survive mixer-tough mountain trails, get Old World craftsmanship.
video icon Plus: Watch the test in our video.

SLEEPING BAGS

When you lose loft, you lose warmth. Ergo, the most durable bag is the one that bounces back best from 3,989 pounds of compression.

video icon Plus: Watch the test in our video.







Subscribe to Backpacker magazine
Sign up for our free weekly e-newsletter
Name:
Address 1:
Address 2:
City:
State:
Zip:
Email (req):
Reader Rating: -

READERS COMMENTS

Dan Africk
Dec 25, 2009

The sleeping bag test was pretty useless- only part of the bags were under the car tires, I think simply putting them in a compressions sack overnight would have been a much better test.

Also, the time it takes the bag to regain its loft isn't really important, what matters is how much loft it regains.

ADD A COMMENT

Your rating:
Your Name:

Comment:

My Profile Join Now

Most recent threads

Trailhead Register
Trekking the Huayhuash
Posted On: Aug 29, 2014
Submitted By: RebeccaD
Trailhead Register
bicycling question
Posted On: Aug 29, 2014
Submitted By: hikerjer


Go
View all Gear
Find a retailer

Special sections - Expert handbooks for key trails, techniques and gear

Check out Montana in Warren Miller's Ticket to Ride
Warren Miller athletes charge hard and reflect on Big Sky country, their love for this space and the immense energy allotted to the people who reside in Montana.

Boost Your Apps
Add powerful tools and exclusive maps to your BACKPACKER apps through our partnership with Trimble Outdoors.

Carry the Best Maps
With BACKPACKER PRO Maps, get life-list destinations and local trips on adventure-ready waterproof myTopo paper.

FREE Rocky Mountain Trip Planner
Sign up for a free Rocky Mountain National Park trip planning kit from our sister site MyRockyMountainPark.com.

Follow BackpackerMag on Twitter Follow Backpacker on Facebook
Get 2 FREE Trial Issues and 3 FREE GIFTS
Survival Skills 101 • Eat Better
The Best Trails in America
YES! Please send me my FREE trial issues of Backpacker
and my 3 FREE downloadable booklets.
Full Name:
City:
Address 1:
Zip Code:
State:
Address 2:
Email (required):
Free trial offer valid for US subscribers only. Canadian subscriptions | International subscriptions